Every year since we moved into our house 8 years ago, the raspberry patch would start giving us a handful of ripe juicy berries just a few days before the 4th of July. But with 2012′s odd and early spring, everything has shown up a couple weeks sooner than expected. And the raspberries followed suit. Before we had even flipped the calendar to July, we had already filled many a bucket with fresh raspberries from our garden.
The berries have been bigger and better than normal this year.
And we are reveling in every last juicy red bite!
With the heat and oppressive humidity we’ve been experiencing the past week, this Frozen White Chocolate & Raspberry Dessert is a welcome sight. It’s built on a salty crumbly pretzel crust, which our oldest daughter thinks must be the very foundation of heaven. For me, pretzel crusts bring back tasty childhood memories of potluck desserts. But until I heard Hatti’s newfound delight in it, I realized I haven’t made a pretzel crust in years. Many, many years. And that needs to change!
I’ve shared before that I’m not the biggest fan of white chocolate, so I was holding my breath, waiting for my taste buds to judge that first bite…
And I was so pleasantly surprised. The filling is truly delicious, with the white chocolate rounded out by freshly whipped cream and cream cheese. The luscious red raspberries add sweet and tangy bites, along with beautiful cut-throughs from the slicing of each frozen square. And the pretzel crust offers the tastiest contrast, of which I won’t neglect to incorporate a bit more often around here now.
- 1-1/4 c. crushed pretzles
- 3 T. sugar
- 4 T. unsalted butter, melted
- 1 pt. heavy cream, divided
- 12 oz. white baking chocolate
- 1/2 c. light corn syrup
- 6 oz. cream cheese
- 1/4 c. powdered sugar
- 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 2 c. fresh raspberries
- 1/4 c. raspberry jam
- 1 T. water
Preheat oven to 350°. Fold a 16'' long piece of heavy duty foil to an 8''x16'' strip and place in an 8'' square pan, leaving overhang on 2 sides. Repeat with another sheet of foil in opposite direction, lining pan completely. Spray foil on bottom of pan with nonstick spray.
Stir together all crust ingredients and press into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Let cool on a rack.
In a medium saucepan over low heat, cook 1/3 cup of the cream, white chocolate, corn syrup, and cream cheese over low heat. Whisk constantly until completely smooth, about 6 to 8 minutes. Cool to room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl, beat remaining cream, powdered sugar, and vanilla on high speed until stiff peaks form. Fold the white chocolate mixture in by hand. Then gently fold in the raspberries. Scoop mixture on top of the pretzel crust and gently spread it out evenly, tapping the pan gently on the counter a couple times to settle in the filling. Cover pan and freeze until firm, 6 to 8 hours, or overnight.
Stir together the jam and water.
About 15 minutes prior to serving, take the dessert out of the freezer. The dessert cuts very easily when frozen, but is easier to eat if it has that 15 minutes of thawing time. It also holds its shape very well, even after sitting out for quite awhile. To remove the dessert from the pan, gently pull up on the foil overhangs. Peel the foil down from the edges and cut dessert into squares. Then drizzle some raspberry topping over each dessert square.
Heavily adapted from the February - April 2012 edition of At Home with Kowalski's magazine.